Saturday, October 17, 2015

Turning product page abandonment into further opportunities

Within today's multi-device, cross-channel shopping experiences, there are typically two critical moments when shoppers stray from the online shopping process: when viewing a product page or their shopping cart. These actions are ominously referred to as Product Page Abandonment and Shopping Cart Abandonment, but retailers are breaking away from the view that all shoppers leave without the intention of returning to complete a purchase. Progressive retailers are considering what the shoppers' actions truly mean and responding appropriately to turn abandonment into renewed sales opportunities.

For example, study of their behavior reveals that shoppers are using product pages and the shopping cart as tools to transition across devices and between channels: A shopper may leave a product page on mobile with the intention of moving the item to the shopping cart on his laptop at a later time.

Retailers are learning to adjust their tactics and strategies surrounding these pivotal moments to better assure sales. One weapon in the battle is the use of product page abandonment reminders. The concept of triggering an email when a shopper leaves a product page may be new to some retailers, even those making use of shopping cart reminders. In fact, only 15 percent of retailers, according to Bronto's research, are currently making use of this technique.
Here are a few pointers on proper use of email reminders drawn from Bronto's recently-released whitepaper on the topic (see form below to download):

While the "strike while the iron is hot" philosophy works well for shopping cart reminders, it could be too aggressive for product page abandonment in which shoppers may be less committed to the purchase. Retailers may get better results sending these types of reminders out 24 to 48 hours after the shopper leaves the page.

Shoppers, of course, may be uncomfortable with the use of their browsing data, even for their own, personalized email promotions. While many retailers explicitly let the customer know they are getting the message because they visited a particular product page, others are opting for subtlety — they may feature the abandoned product without noting that the product page was visited, include the product among other related items, or go with a generic customer service theme.

Additional influencers, such as product ratings, reviews and availability, can reconnect the shopper to the product they browsed and motivate them to start shopping again. Eleven percent of product page reminders, according to Bronto's research, include product ratings, 6 percent feature reviews, and another 6 percent feature both.

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